As the Platform for African European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development (PAEPARD) project draws to a close, and considering the experience acquired in funds mobilization and funding opportunities information and sharing; the theme for the 1st Quarter of 2017 Technical Seminar Meeting centered on “Innovative Funding Mechanisms for Agricultural Research Development (ARD): some lessons learned from the multi-stakeholder partnerships promoted by PAEPARD”. The seminar which held on the 31st March, 2017 was attended by FARA Staff and partner institutions based in Accra and chaired by the Executive Director of FARA, Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo.
Among things discussed are the overall objective of PAEPARD which is to build joint African-European multi-stakeholder partnerships in ARD, contributing to achieving the MDGs (SDGs). Delivering the seminar, Dr. Jonas Mugabe who is the PAEPARD Manager highlighted the specific objectives of PAEPARD which seeks to promote a more enhanced, more equitable, more demand-driven, and mutually beneficial collaboration of Africa and Europe on ARD with the aim of attaining the MDGs (SDGs). Part of PAEPARD’s success story includes 19 consortia in 17 Africain countries + 5 Users-Led Process (ULP) among which is the consortium of Benin that supports women of Zogbodomey (southern of the country) to improve the processing of soy-bean in milk and soy-bean Afitin.
Dr. Mugabe and Mrs. Vesta Nunoo (PAEPARD Grants Manager) pointed out some challenges and the lessons learnt such as: (i) the coherence between the current funding mechanism which is push-oriented, accessed through the competition and multi-stakeholder partnerships, (ii) the time constraint in developing proposals, (iii) the articulation of non-research partners which takes time; (iv) the requirements from donors may need to deconstruct and reconstruct the partnerships; (v) getting a European partner may be difficult or may take time while the calls have a tight deadlines for which they are opened.
The technical seminar commenced in 2016 and aims to provide insights into FARA’s core programmes which include Knowledge Management and Decisions Support, Capacity Development, Innovations and partnerships; Cross-cutting Areas (Climate Change, Youth and Agribusiness, Nutrition) and Operations management (Financial Management, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation and Risk Management). Partner institutions such as the FAO, IWMI, CCLEAR and CSIR have been invited to previous seminars. The next seminar is scheduled to hold on the 30th June, 2017.